Inspiring The Future Blog
I signed up as a Nursing Careers Ambassador with ‘Inspiring The Future’ last summer after seeing it shared on Twitter, as part of NHS70 celebrations.
I thought ‘I can do that! I love my job, love to talk, and would love to tell anyone who will listen how great being a nurse is!’
Last October I was invited to attend a local high school to share my experiences of being a nurse with some Year 11 students.
Once I arrived there were several other ambassadors there, all with very different stories to mine, ready to tell the students about their journeys and experiences in the NHS.
This event was set up as a ‘Guess Who’ networking event, so no uniform to give my job away, just a room of 16 year olds to ask me questions and try and work out what I do as my job, and convince them how brilliant it is – how hard could it be?!
The room was set up with tables and a timer, we all had about 10 minutes each, to work our way around the room from table to table having a chat and answering questions.
My first table was a table of 15 and 16 year old males, a tough crowd! They didn’t seem too convinced that nursing wasn’t a ‘girls job’, though they were pretty curious about the endotracheal tubes and laryngoscope blades I had brought with me, to talk about how patients airways are kept safe when they are in intensive care.
A couple of tables later and the questions I was being asked were really varied, from the obvious ones that I expected from a careers event;
‘how much do you earn’ – fyi a nursing salary seems like mega money when you’re 15!; to the ‘why do you like doing your job?’ and ‘where did you study?’ Then onto perhaps the less obvious, braver questions surrounding serious illness/injury to death and dying, which to be honest I wasn’t expecting. I answered as honestly and tactfully as I could, I’m not entirely sure if they were genuinely interested or just wanted to try and shock me, though there’s not much that shocks me after being in my job for 13 years!
I would recommend to anyone in nursing that get the opportunity to talk to schools about your role to do it! The networking event with Inspiring the Future was an informal way to share experiences in nursing, no big talks or presentations, just a chat with some great students. It was interesting to hear what they wanted to do in the future, and their perceptions of nursing and the NHS.
Being part of NHS70 Inspiring the Future program has now given me to confidence to sign up as Nursing Now Ambassador as well, which will hopefully allow me the opportunity to share my experiences with even more potential future nurses, it’s the best job in the world, why wouldn’t anyone want to do it?!